October 24 is a sad day for Star Trek fans. It marks the anniversary of the death of Gene Roddenberry, the man who created the series we all adore. Roddenberry, who passed away due to a blood clot in 1991, left behind a legacy that continues to inspire us to this day. His vision of a better future is what drives Star Trek, as well as drives the fans of the franchise.
Today, StarTrek.com remembers Roddenberry through the words of those who loved and admired him, and the many pieces written at the time of his death.
“Roddenberry, 70, suffered a massive blood clot and died at Los Angeles Doctors Hospital, Paramount Television spokesman John Wentworth told the Associated Press. Roddenberry had been ailing for six weeks, Wentworth said.
"...Leonard Nimoy, who played the half-human, half-Vulcan named Spock, said Roddenberry "had an extraordinary vision about mankind and the potential of mankind's future," the AP reported.” - Washington Post, October 25, 1991
“Multi-ethnic and inter-galactic, democratic and humanistic, Star Trek offered a modern mythology for a secular age. Its message was that power without humanity, intellect without compassion, are uncivilised.” - The Telegraph, October 26, 1991
"Few ideas in the annals of motion picture and television history have inspired more passion and allegiance on the part of the audience than has Star Trek," said Brandon Tartikoff, chairman of Paramount Pictures, which made the Star Trek series for television and all the feature films.
"For Mr. Roddenberry, the Star Trek phenomenon was more than entertainment, as he explained in an interview with The Los Angeles Times in May.
"It has become a crusade of mine to demonstrate that TV need not be violent to be exciting," he said. "I wanted to send a message to the television industry that excitement is not made of car chases. We stress humanity, and this is done at considerable cost." - The New York Times, October 26, 1991
“The phones began ringing in Aurora, Colorado, Friday morning at Star Trek: The Official Fan Club — 250 calls in the first few hours. "We've had people breaking down on the phone crying," says president Dan Madsen. "Their lives are so influenced by him that they can't imagine the world without him. But Gene's creation will live long and prosper long after he's gone." - Newsweek, 1991